Procurement procedure

German text altered - new translation is not available yet!

A basic distinction can be made between calls for tenders for the procurement of services in the private sector and those in the public sector. In the case of private calls for tenders, undertakings that are known to the contracting party are usually invited to submit a tender.

With such a call for tenders, an undertaking (private entity) creates its own market and can compare tenders more easily and choose from a price/performance tender. Since this is a free award, the cheapest tenderer also does not have to be chosen.

Procurement processes that are subject to the Bundesvergabegesetz are characterised by a formalised procedure and public-law legal protection options. The following comments only relate to calls for tenders that are subject to the Bundesvergabegesetz.

Searching and finding calls for tenders

With the 'call for tenders search' service on USP, it is possible to search for and view all calls for tenders published in accordance with the Austrian Bundesvergabegesetz 2018 (Federal Procurement Act) in one place without additional registration. The service also offers many features such as a full-text search and various filtering and sorting options.

Creating metadata

Metadata are data to be provided on data.gv.at which contain a reference to the core data. With the metadata creation service, the USP enables the contracting entity or its technical service provider to publish metadata on data.gv.at.

In order to create metadata, you must first be logged into the USP and have the corresponding 'e-procurement metadata creator' procedural right assigned to your undertaking by the USP administrator. Data.gv.at informs you on the format specifications for core data and core data sources ( data.gv.at).German text

Types of contracts

Contractin authorities and sectoral contracting entities must put the following contracts out to public tender:

  • construction contracts, supply contracts, service contracts
  • construction and service concession contracts

If a contract contains various components of the aforementioned types of contract, the Bundesvergabegesetz also regulates how these contracts are to be assessed.

Contracting authorities

Contracting authoritiess are the

  • federal government,
  • federal provinces,
  • municipalities and
  • associations of municipalities.

Public organisations are also contractin authorities: these are companies or corporations with at least partial legal capacity that perform tasks that are in the public interest and do not offer them commercially. They are financed or controlled by the state or other public institutions (e.g. social insurance organisations).

Sectoral contracting entities

Contracting entities in the sectoral area carry out certain activities such as, for example, water and energy supply and transportation. With the exception of its second part, the Bundesvergabegesetz applies to the procurement procedure of sectoral contracting entities. Also private companies can be sectoral contracting entities.

The Bundesvergabegesetz provides for a separate procedure for the procurement procedure, which must be observed. The principles which apply in this case include the ban on discrimination in accordance with the principles of free and fair competition and the equal treatment of all applicants and tenderers. A contract may only be awarded to authorised, capable and reliable undertakings at reasonable prices.

Suitability

An undertaking's suitability for participating in a procurement procedure is determined by the contracting entity by checking its authorisation, reliability and financial and economic and technical capacity. Its suitability requires compliance with all three elements mentioned. It is possible to submit a European Single Procurement Document.

If a tenderer does not agree with a call for tenders, an award decision or any other separately contestable decision of the contracting entity, he/she has the option of asserting this in a procurement control procedure.

The Bundesvergabegesetz makes a distinction between the upper and lower threshold range. While the upper threshold range essentially reflects the regulations of the procurement directives of the European Union, the lower threshold range could be more flexibly structured. That means, for instance, that the contracting entity has more scope in the selection of the procurement procedure in the lower threshold range and shorter deadlines are to be met. The total value excluding turnover tax which the contracting entity is expected to pay serves as the basis for calculating the threshold value. In terms of figures, the threshold values depend on the contracting entity and the type of contract. Public construction contracts with an order value of at least 5,538,000 Euro are subject to the regulations of the upper threshold range.

The threshold values are adjusted every two years to the corresponding values of the Government Procurement Agreement (GPA) and are therefore subject to certain fluctuations. The relevant threshold values are announced by the Federal Ministry of Justice in the Federal Law Gazette (cf. most recently the threshold values since 7 February 2023, BGBl II No 34/2923).

Schwellenwerteverordnung (Threshold Value Regulation)

Due to the renewed extension of the Schwellenwerteverordnung 2023 until 31 December 2025, contracts in the construction, supply and service sector up to a value of 100,000 Euro can be awarded directly to suitable, capable and reliable undertakings. Furthermore, the threshold value for what is known as the 'restricted procedure without notice' is also being extended for construction contracts of 1 million Euro. However, here too, according to the Federal Procurement Act, at least five authorised, capable and reliable undertakings must be invited to submit a tender, which guarantees fair competition for the respective contract.

Caution

These regulations apply to all traders from EU Member States in Austria.

Further links

Legal bases

Translated by the European Commission
Last update: 1 January 2024

Responsible for the content: Federal Ministry of Justice

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